We had the good fortune of connecting with Joshua de Leon and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Joshua, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I had always wanted to monitor myself, and art allows me to do that. In high school, music just became a healthy outlet to describe my failing relationship at the time. I felt very trapped in an emotionally abusive relationship, and neither me or my partner were very good to each other. Negative emotions feed off more negative emotions, I guess. I think a big part of it was that we were both young, we were both each other’s first “real” relationship, or as real as you can get when you’re sixteen. Everyone goes through crazy fluctuations in mood in high school, right? And even though I wasn’t alone in my emotional turbulence, it always feels like you’re the only person going through it at the time. I’d even call it egocentric. But I didn’t know how else to take my feelings and put them to good use besides this. I was able to put these feelings down and get them out into some demos. Now, at 22, I can look back on those old songs and see how dark I was feeling and how much I have grown since then. I want to focus on more happier times in my 20’s, and happy times come with the bad. Most of the singles we have been putting out have a touch of melancholy to them that I think a lot of people can relate to. Now that I am old, I can realize that even the good times need a little sad to balance them out.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Quarantine has been a mixed bag for me. Initially, I was so depressed at how the remaining semester of my senior year had been snatched away by a virus, along with many performance opportunities I had lined up for my band. However, reality hit me, and I had to make the most out of a terrible situation. I began staying in my garage for hours at a time to record music. Old demos and previously released music came together to form a project that has deep meaning to me. While our first album isn’t out yet, it is currently being completed and I can say that I am proud of what I accomplished during the long lockdown. It’s going to be called “With Love // With Rage”, and it will chronicle most of my college experience.
The creative process was both thrilling and exhausting, and I stayed up long nights making what will be One Outta Ten’s best music to date. Some singles have been released, but even those don’t come close to conveying the message our upcoming album will present. Our latest single, El Matador (https://open.spotify.com/album/7xvmjRy2jwFpwpuGlqKQzy?si=_0uMpoZvQ_CuZ2tbqIzd0Q), is a very personal story to me, and it tells my insecurities while meeting my current partner. I was super nervous while initially meeting her, and it turned into the classic story of “What are we?” Luckily, we are very happy now and super gross about it.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
If I had to plan an ENTIRE week with a pal visiting from out of town, I would definitely take them to my local haunts. I live in Glendale, so I would probably pick them up from Burbank Airport and then hit Porto’s for a quick lunch. Porto’s is one of those spots that everyone from out of town needs to be taken to. After that, our next couple of days would be spent visiting the beautiful beaches LA has to offer. Venice and Santa Monica for the quintessential Los Angeles weirdo beach experience on one day, but then I’d take them to a nice Northern beach near Malibu. Probably El Matador State Beach? It’s a cozy little spot that I found artistic inspiration in (one of my best dates was there). I’d probably hit the mountains so they see LA from the top, if the smog isn’t too bad. I like camping in the San Bernardino mountains, and I hope they’d want to spend an overnighter camping there. I’d also take them to Sunset for the nice Hollywood experience, and if we had time, rollerskating at the Moonlight Rollerway. Then I’d finish up with an In-n-Out trip, one more Porto’s for the road, and on the plane they go.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I have to shoutout my friends at Apiary (@apiary1.0) who run a lot of cool music every Thursday at Peace of Mind (@peaceofmindcpt) in Compton. They’re doing a lot for the artistic community and are diverse in their showcases. I would also love to shout out the organization Water Drop LA (@waterdropla), who provide free water to displaced peoples in Skid Row and Downtown LA every Sunday. These folks are doing great work in LA and make me feel like I’m part of a community.
Eric Hakopian Paolo Panlilio Preston Maestri